The Danish government wants to allow mink breeding again in the new year after a widespread scandal surrounding millions of animals killed in the corona pandemic. After the state health institute SSI classified the risk of a greatly reduced breeding for public health as low, it was decided to let a temporary ban on mink breeding expire at the end of the year, the Danish Ministry of Food announced on Friday. However, some measures to limit infection are necessary, which one wants to go through with the breeders.

    Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen announced in November 2020 that all mink in Denmark – more than 15 million animals – should be killed. The radical step was justified by the fact that the corona virus had mutated in the animals and had been transmitted to humans.

    The mass culling had sparked a major debate in the country. As it turned out later, there was no legal basis for the killing – it had to be created afterwards. The then food minister, Mogens Jensen, resigned in the wake of the controversy. Keeping mink was banned and the keepers were compensated. Until then, the animals had been bred for fur production, in which Denmark was one of the world market leaders.

    The government then asked the SSI this spring to assess the human health risk of resuming the posture by January 1, 2023. The institute found in May that the risk of a new worrying corona variant emerging was limited by a limited return to mink farming in Denmark. (dpa)